Grant Hill Stars In Suns Victory

Monday, December 3rd 2007, 6:57 am
By: News On 6

Tim Duncan and LeBron James are out. Grant Hill is back.

On a day when Duncan had to helped off the court because of leg injuries, and James watched from the bench in street clothes because of a sprained left index finger, the oft-injured Hill had his highest-scoring game in nearly two years. Rejuvenated in his first season with Phoenix, Hill had 28 points - nine during a fourth-quarter flurry that broke open a close game - in the Suns' 115-104 victory over the New York Knicks on Sunday night at Madison Square Garden.

The 35-year-old Hill also had eight rebounds and seven assists.

``Sometimes you need new scenery,'' Hill said. ``Coming here is a great environment, great coaching staff, great guys, and just the chance to break away from all the ankle talk and stuff from the past. That's all behind me and I feel good. Now it's about trying to go out and help this team win.''

San Antonio overcame the loss of Duncan to beat Portland 100-79, while Boston took advantage of James' absence in an 80-70 victory over Cleveland.

In other NBA games Sunday, it was Orlando 104, the Los Angeles Lakers 97; Golden State 109, Seattle 96; Indiana 101, the Los Angeles Clippers 95; Detroit 118, New Jersey 95; and Denver 115, Miami 89.

In New York, Hill was 13-for-17 from the field. He went to the bench for good midway through the fourth quarter, possibly all that prevented him from his first 30-point game since he scored 34 for Orlando against Miami on Feb. 27, 2005.

``He's a seven-time All-Star,'' Phoenix coach Mike D'Antoni said. ``He's healthy and playing great. Obviously he had a good game - almost a triple-double. He's capable and has done it all his career whenever he's been healthy, and he's healthy.''

Amare Stoudemire had 28 points and 12 rebounds in the Suns' 10th win in 12 games. Eddy Curry and Stephon Marbury had 21 points apiece for the Knicks. Marbury's father, Don, died Sunday night.

In San Antonio, Duncan left with 7:40 remaining in the first half after getting caught up with Portland's James Jones. Duncan fell to the floor clutching his knee, and was helped off the court by teammates Francisco Elson and Robert Horry.

``He slipped. I hope he's all right,'' Jones said.

Duncan bruised his right knee and sprained his right ankle. The team said all of his ligaments appeared stable and that he would have an MRI on Monday.

``We'll have to find out a little bit more about the knee and hope that it's more scary than anything else. That's what I'm hoping,'' coach Gregg Popovich said. ``He'll probably miss a little bit of time.''

Tony Parker led San Antonio with 27 points and eight assists.

In Boston, Ray Allen had 20 points to help the Celtics improve to an NBA-best 14-2.

Zydrunas Ilgauskas led Cleveland with 12 points and 13 rebounds.

``When King James goes down, you feel like you have to carry the team by yourself offensively,'' Cavs forward Drew Gooden said. ``I think we are starting to get better at doing that, but then again that is not our identity.''

On Tuesday night in Cleveland, James had 38 points - 11 in overtime - and 13 assists in the Cavaliers' 109-104 victory over Boston. He sprained the finger the next night in a loss in Detroit, and missed the Cavs' loss Friday night in Toronto.

Magic 104, Lakers 97

At Los Angeles, Hedo Turkoglu sparked a pivotal 9-0 run with a 3-pointer that put Orlando ahead to stay and added a layup with 55 seconds left. Rashard Lewis led the Magic with 18 points, and Dwight Howard had 17 points and eight rebounds. Orlando is 15-4 in its first season under coach Stan Van Gundy, matching the best start in franchise history. Turkoglu finished with 14 points. Kobe Bryant led the Lakers with 28 points, 19 in the first quarter. Lamar Odom had 19 points and 19 rebounds.

Warriors 109, SuperSonics 96

At Seattle, Stephen Jackson and Al Harrington led Golden State with 20 points apiece, and Andris Biedrins had 18 points and 16 rebounds. Monta Ellis added 18 points, and Baron Davis had 14 points, eight rebounds and nine assists. Golden State is 9-1 in its past 10 games after opening 0-6. The game was delayed about 15 minutes in the first quarter because of a small fire in the scoreboard above the court. The scoreboard was lowered just above the floor, and firefighters used an extinguisher to put out the flames.

Pacers 101, Clippers 95

At Los Angeles, Jamaal Tinsley scored 10 of his 29 points in the final 4 minutes, and Jermaine O'Neal added 20 points and 15 rebounds for Indiana. Chris Kaman had 22 points and 22 rebounds for the Clippers, 2-9 since a win at Indiana on Nov. 7 that capped a 4-0 start.

Nuggets 115, Heat 89

At Denver, Carmelo Anthony scored 30 points and Kenyon Martin added a season-high 20 for the Nuggets. Allen Iverson also scored 20 points and Marcus Camby had 21 rebounds - his fifth 20-rebound game of the season. Dwyane Wade had 13 points for Miami.

Pistons 118, Nets 95

At Auburn Hills, Mich., Jason Maxiell had 18 points and 11 rebounds, and Richard Hamilton added 19 points for Detroit. The Pistons improved to 6-1 in their past seven, and beat New Jersey for the fifth straight time. Vince Carter had 22 points for the Nets.